We cashed a comfortable ticket on the under in Saturday’s clash between the Clippers and Mavericks. That gives us four wins over our past five best bets. Sunday’s NBA slate includes just two games, with the Super Bowl being the marquee sporting event of the day and year. However, even with limited options, I’ve identified a play on an underdog that could offer some value.
Let’s head to the Hoosier State, where the Pacers will host the Minnesota Timberwolves.
Minnesota Timberwolves vs. Indiana Pacers, Total and Odds
Moneyline: Timberwolves -260 | Pacers +215
Spread: Timberwolves -6.5 (-106) | Pacers +6.5 (-114)
Total: Over 237.5 (-110) | Under 237.5 (-110)
NBA Championship Odds: Timberwolves +10000 | Pacers +50000
Odds courtesy of FanDuel Sportsbook. Sign up for FanDuel Sportsbook today and get your first bet risk-free for up to $1,000.
Minnesota Timberwolves vs. Indiana Pacers, News, Analysis, and Picks
The Indiana Pacers showed a ton of fight in Friday’s game against Cleveland. Indiana jumped out to a 47-28 lead after the first quarter but lost each of the remaining periods as the Cavaliers went on to win 120-113. I must admit that I was impressed with the Pacers’ performance, considering the four new players they’re trying to integrate into the team: Tyrese Haliburton, Buddy Hield, Tristan Thompson, and Jalen Smith were all added before the trade deadline.
On Friday, Indiana was a six-point underdog against the Cavaliers. Now we’re catching an extra half-point against a Minnesota team that I have below Cleveland in my power ratings. This is almost an autoplay in that regard, but if you’re looking for another reason to back Indiana, note that the Pacers are 5-1 against the spread in the past six meetings against the Timberwolves.
I think we’ll see a more cohesive performance from the Pacers after having a game under their belt with the new players. I’m also encouraged by a comment that Haliburton made following the trade from the Kings where he expressed disappointment in his former team for not viewing him as a part of their rebuilding process.
I asked Tyrese Haliburton about not having the chance to rebuild with the Kings:— James Boyd (@RomeovilleKid) February 10, 2022
“They ain’t want me. … It’s part of the business.”@jxlorenzi then asked if there’s any difficulty to trust a new franchise:
“It hurt when I got traded. … I’mma put all I got into this.” #Pacers pic.twitter.com/L3TDM0awFA
Haliburton channeled that frustration into a 23-point effort in his first game with the Pacers to lead the team. He also dished out six assists and went 4-0f-6 from behind the three-point line.
I’ll admit that I wasn’t a big fan of this trade initially, given my lack of confidence in the Pacers’ ability to put a competitive team on the court and attract fans. However, it wouldn’t surprise me if we find more spots where the Pacers offer value the rest of the way at the betting window.
This is one of those spots, so I’ll gladly look to take the points with the home underdogs.
Pick: Under 216
All NBA predictions and picks are courtesy of SportsGrid.